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Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens after lengthy renewal delay

Delay in Edmonton transit centre project sparks questions
WATCH ABOVE (Dec. 6): Global News has learned a delay in a city project is literally leaving Edmontonians out in the cold. The Jasper Place Transit Cetnre renewal was supposed to take less than a year. As Vinesh Pratap reports, it's now scheduled to open March 2020.

An Edmonton transit centre reopened Thursday after renewal work was delayed over a year due to a falling out with the initial contractor.

Jasper Place Transit Centre opened on April 9 at 10 a.m.

The $5.6-million renewal was supposed to be completed by the end of 2018 but the original schedule was upended after the city terminated the contract with the initial contractor — a move described as a rare step.

The city indicated in November 2018 it found only 30 per cent of the work was done.

The Jasper Place Transit Centre under construction on Dec. 6, 2019.
The Jasper Place Transit Centre under construction on Dec. 6, 2019. Vinesh Pratap/ Global News

The transit centre has been fenced off since spring 2018.

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READ MORE: Delay in Jasper Place Transit Centre renewal leaves Edmonton customers out in cold

The site sat idle for about nine months before a new contractor resumed work this past summer. The project was expected to be complete by March 2020.

On Wednesday, Edmonton Transit tweeted, saying the centre would reopen April 9.

“Thanks for your patience while we completed upgrades. Please see map for updated stop information,” the message read.

Transit response to COVID-19

The City of Edmonton began offering free public transit service as part of its response to the novel coronavirus outbreak in March.

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READ MORE: Edmonton adjusts roads, pedestrian call buttons to promote physical distancing

In an effort to protect all riders and city staff, protective shields were installed on every bus in operation. The city implemented heightened cleaning, sanitizing and physical distancing measures as well as rear-door boarding in an effort to minimize contact.

But there is more all the city’s residents can do, the company said.

“Please only travel when you need to,” Eddie Robar, branch manager of Edmonton Transit Service, said. “Stay off the buses unless it’s an essential trip for yourself or to work or you need to go get groceries.”

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Man who coughed on Edmonton bus driver, transit officers charged with assault

ETS has seen ridership drop substantially during the pandemic.

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Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020.
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020. Eric Beck, Global News
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020.
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020. Eric Beck, Global News
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020.
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020. Eric Beck, Global News
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020.
Edmonton’s Jasper Place Transit Centre reopens Thursday, April 9, 2020. Eric Beck, Global News